The question was raised, where was the NAACP? We always appreciate the opportunity to share our existence in a positive manner when asked to do so. We were there all the time, systematically and methodically developing strategically to effectively challenge the issues. Some were, Housing issues, police misconduct issues, the inequality of the educational system in certain neighborhoods and employment matters.
The NAACP was very instrumental in assisting the United States Senate to provide the $ 1.25 billion dollars necessary to fund the Pigford ll settlement. We were @ the fore- front, advocating for the 10 year compensation for some of the farmers who lost their land. This has allowed as many as 70,000 African American farmers who suffered blatant acts of discrimination to be eligible for cash damage awards and debt relief. However, These claims cannot begin to be further investigated, let alone settled, until after Congress has appropriated the funding. We are advocating on behalf of legislation containing the $1.41 billion dollar for the Cobell settlement which involved lost royalty funds of natural resources on Indian land.
- When no one else would challenge the tea parties open dogmatic approach (although every one was talking about it privately), the NAACP became involved and spoke truth to power.
- We were/are dealing with the long over due reparation.
- We were (are) dealing with the high black on black crime rate and HIV infection that is ravishing our community all over America.
- We were/are speaking to the unfair sentencing guidelines that tend to impose stiffer sentencing for African Americans compared to any other ethnic group.
- We are dealing with the disparities in the insurance, lenders and credit reporting system that tends to redline African Americans when seeking credit for home ownership;
Truly, I could go on and on, but did anyone ever wonder if President /CEO Jealous was developing a strategy to place the right wing agenda on the table?
Now, to add to your question, where was the Pasadena Branch of the NAACP?
- We were dealing with the gang injunctions in the Monrovia/Duarte area.
- We were dealing with gentrification in Pasadena.
- We were collarabationg with other ethnic groups to work on the issue of Black & Brown challenges.
- We were dealing with the very low high school graduation rate & the small percentage of African Americans students enrolled at PCC.
- We were dealing with the loss of job creations in this city and surrounding neighborhoods.
- We were the only advocacy group in LA Superior Court (div 61) seeking Injunctive relief for the last Officer Involved shooting in Pasadena.
In summation, the NAACP has been at the front dealing with legislative, public service, health, educational and civil rights issues. After celebrating 101 years as a proven, tested and tried organization, no critical piece of legislation has ever been passed and signed into law without our input and involvement.
If you are not a member of the NAACP, Pasadena would welcome you. and request you to become involved in advocacy, Join us as we attempt to continue move forward to ensure equal rights for all citizens.
Call us so we can tell you the story about “ Who will Bell the Cat”.
Joe Brown, President